More deaths tied to Boppy loungers, nursing pillows, Consumer Reports warns

Agency investigating infant deaths that may be associated with the products

Boppy Pillow
Boppy Pillow (Boppy.com)

SAN ANTONIO – One year after the Consumer Product Safety Commission warned parents about the dangers of letting infants sleep on nursing pillows, Consumer Reports is once again sounding the alarm, fearing parents aren’t getting the message.

Seven recent infant deaths are tied to infant loungers and nursing pillows made by Boppy, according to government data analyzed by Consumer Reports.

The CPSC warned parents last October not to allow infants to sleep on nursing pillows or other pillow-like products due to the risk of suffocation, saying there had been 28 infant deaths between 2012 and 2018 that were possibly linked to nursing pillows or lounge pads.

Since then, Consumer Reports said there have been seven additional infant fatalities and one injury added to the SaferProducts.gov public database. All seven recent deaths are linked to nursing pillows or loungers made by Boppy, but CPSC has said that its warning extends across all brands.

CPSC spokesperson Joe Martyak told Consumer Reports that “the agency is currently considering what legal action is necessary in light of the reported incidents.”

Consumer Reports also received the following statement from Amy St. Germain, Boppy’s vice president for marketing:

“We have long provided clear and unequivocal warnings and instructions for safe usage on all products. We have always stressed that our products are for awake time only. And, as clearly noted on all products, packaging and promotional materials, infants should not be unattended or left to sleep on or with any Boppy product. Despite these measures, our product has been used for infant sleep in adult beds, sofas, cribs, bassinets, and play yards with blankets, pillows, and people—contrary to our warnings, AAP’s guidelines, and CPSC’s October 7, 2020 warning.”

Boppy products and other nursing pillows are designed to help position a baby when breastfeeding or bottle-feeding. Consumer Reports said most of the fatalities occurred after parents put their babies to sleep while propped up on the pillow or lounger, and the baby rolled over and was unable to breathe.

The American Academy of Pediatrics says babies should sleep on their backs and on a firm, flat surface with no padding or pillows.

The agency is investigating infant deaths that could be associated with the products that are popular on baby gift registries.
The agency is investigating infant deaths that could be associated with the products that are popular on baby gift registries.

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About the Author:

Julie Moreno has worked in local television news for more than 20 years. She came to KSAT as a news producer in 2000. After producing thousands of newscasts, she transitioned to the digital team in 2015. She writes on a wide variety of topics from breaking news to trending stories and manages KSAT’s daily digital content strategy.